Please Use The Return Key on Your Cell Phone’s Keyboard

I’ve been doing an inordinate amount of texting lately. I can feel the muscles in my thumbs getting stiff from overwork. Even my wrists, tasked with holding my phone upright, are getting weak with fatigue. Sometimes, I have to put the phone down because my pinkies and ring fingers start to fall asleep.

I’m a two-thumb texter. It’s most efficient. Also, it reduces the risk of me dropping my phone, yet again. But, it means that both of my wrists and thumbs become sore.

What I’ve been noticing lately is that a lot of people like to send multiple successive messages. What ends up happening is that I receive multiple successive messages. Granted, there are times when you send a text message and then have to send another because you forgot something or you need to correct a spelling error. Things happen.

Why, however, do people not use the Return button? It’s like the Return or Enter button on your computer’s keyboard. Effectively, it creates a line break, allowing you to continue typing out a connected yet separate thought.

There was a time when we were limited by T9 and messaging limits, but that time has long since passed. In those days, you had to be careful to use 140 characters effectively, or to send one 140 character message followed by another and another. These days, we can send text messages as long as emails, if not longer!

With iMessages you see an animated ellipses when the person you are texting is typing. Before I’ve had time to respond to your message, why are you already sending me another? If you had used the Return button, I would be able to respond more efficiently.

The biggest problem, really, is that I hate it when my phone keeps beeping. Receiving multiple messages and the associated beeping brings out the curmudgeon in me. I wish we could return to a time when there were breaks built into conversations.

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